Masdevallia orchids are commonly referred to as “Kite Orchids” because of their blooms that are almost triangular-shaped and have what looks like kite-tails coming off of each sepal.Name came after the Spanish doctor and botanist Dr. Jose MASDEVALL. The Masdevallia come from the mountain areas in South and Central America.

Flower spikes can grow to be only a few inches to more than a foot in length and each produces only one bloom. Masdevallia orchid’s blooms come in many different colors ranging from pale to almost neon as well as many different patterns such as spotted or striped.

Masdevallia kimballiana                    Masdevallia Bellavallia

Water Requirements

Masdevallia orchids should be watered frequently because they do not have pseudobulbs for water storage and they tend to dry out fairly quickly. You want to make sure to not let your Masdevallia orchid dry out completely but at the same time be sure not to overwater either.Recommend to cultivate them in sphagnum moss which stays humid for a long time without making the roots rot. The plants should not have wet feet. The quality of the water is very important.recommend rain water or any water that contains little amounts of salt.

Light Requirements

Masdevallias need low to medium light intensity in order to thrive. If your Masdevallia orchid is receiving too much light, it will cause the leaves to turn yellow in color, and too little light will cause the leaves to become a very dark green color and the leaves will become elongated. The best place to grow your Masdevallia orchid indoors is on a shaded windowsill, out of direct sunlight. If you only have a brightly lit windowsill, you might be best putting your Masdevallia in the middle of the room away from the bright light.

Temperature Requirements

Able to tolerate higher temperatures if the humidity evens out the heat. You can use humidity trays or spray regularly every morning and evening.

Temperature requirements for Masdevallia orchids are in the cool to intermediate range. ideal daytime temperatures to grow your Masdevallia orchid is between 16°C to 23°C and night temperatures are between 12.8°C to 15.6°C. A 10° to 15° difference between day and night temperatures is ideal, especially during the hot summer months. If your Masdevallia orchid becomes too hot, this could slow down its growth and ultimately kill your orchid.

Humidity Requirements

Masdevallia orchids require very high humidity levels. The higher the temperature is the higher the humidity should be. A level of 60-80 percent is recommended.

Fertilizer Requirements

Masdevallia orchids should be fertilized with a diluted solution once a week when the orchid is in active growth. When the orchid is not in active growth, fertilizing one time a month is sufficient.

Potting Requirements

Masdevallias should be repotted once every year or two or once the potting medium no longer drains properly or the plant outgrows its pot. You will want to repot after the orchids flowers have bloomed which is typically in the winter or early spring. Masdevallia orchids have fine roots so fine-grade potting media is recommended such as fir bark or tree fern fiber. After repotting your Masdevallia you should maintain a high humidity level in your orchids growing area and also keep the medium a little on the drier side until you see new roots beginning to form.


Klairvoyant Orchids